12/26/2015 6:21PM

Athena enters Barbara Fritchie picture by winning Thirty Eight Go Go

Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club
The 3-year-old filly Athena, ridden by Julien Pimentel, extends her winning streak to three races by winning the Thirty Eight Go Go.

Athena won her first stakes and her third race in a row on Saturday at Laurel Park, rallying along the inside in the stretch to defeat late-running Bound by a length in the one-mile, $100,000 Thirty Eight Go Go Stakes.

Athena, who is based in Kentucky with trainer Helen Pitts, shipped in after winning a pair of races at Churchill Downs, a first-level allowance at seven furlongs and a second-level allowance  at a one-turn mile.

Jockey Julian Pimentel gave Athena a heady ride in the Thirty Eight Go Go, following the advancing Paulassilverlining and Pangburn on the far turn, and then opting to go to the inside entering the stretch. At the finish, Pimentel’s decision to save ground may have been the difference over wide-running 12-1 shot Bound.

“I had a good trip all the way around there,” Pimentel said. “The key was getting her to relax, Helen told me.”

Athena paid $13.20 as fifth choice in the nine-horse field. She covered a mile over a good track in 1:37.85.

“She a lovely filly,” Pitts said. “She’s gotten better and better, and she loves the one-turn mile.”

Pitt said she would discuss Grade 2, $300,000 Barbara Fritchie, a seven-furlong race for fillies and mares at Laurel Park on Feb. 13, with Athena’s owner Mary Grum as a possible next start.

Athena, a 3-year-old daughter of Street Sense is now 4 for 10 with earnings of $171,736.

Bound finished a half-length in front of third-place Paulassilverlining, who easily took the lead nearing stretch but was outfinished in the final furlong. Pangburn finished fourth, three-quarters of a length farther back.

Jennings Handicap: Noteworthy Peach blows ‘em away

Noteworthy Peach, making his third start off an almost six-month layoff, was clearly best in the one-mile Jennings Handicap for Maryland-breds, circling the leaders into the stretch and pulling away to win by six lengths.

Noteworthy Peach, trained by Gary Capuano, was second in the Federico Tesio at Pimlico in the spring before going to the sidelines. He was impressive winning a second-level optional-claiming race going a mile in his return but finished fifth going 1 1/8 miles in his last start.

“He loves this distance, that one-turn mile he seems to relish,” Capuano said. “He might have bounced last time, he ran so big in his comeback, but he doesn’t seem to do as well at two turns.

Noteworthy Peach, ridden by Jevian Toledo, paid $8.20 as the second choice in the 10-horse field. He was time in 1:37.41. The early splits were 24.46 seconds, 47.85, 1:12.64, and 1:24.64.

Bridget’s Bug Luvy sprinted clear in the $50,000 Jennings while being tracked by Admirals War Chest and D C Dancer. Noteworthy Peach lengthened his stride and went after them on the far turn, was fanned widest of the top four into the stretch, and then finished nicely to win going away.

Admirals War Chest held second by a head over Any Court Inastorm. It was a neck back to Bridget’s Big Luvy in fourth, and another 1 3/4 lengths back to D C Dancer in fifth.

Maryland Futurity: Ravenheart digs deep

Ravenheart gave the DB Dojo LLC of Bode Miller its first stakes winner when he turned back Flash McCaul to win the $50,000 Maryland Futurity by a head.

The Maryland Futurity was the third win of the month at Laurel Park for former champion Alpine skier Miller, who also owns the maiden winners Hold On Momma and Isofass.

Ravenheart did not break sharply in the seven-furlong Futurity but moved up to early contention between horses for jockey Forest Boyce. Ravenheart challenged for the lead three wide nearing the stretch, and then continued well under smooth handling from Boyce to earn the decision.

Ravenheart, a son of Dance With Ravens, paid $10.80 in the nine-horse field. He was timed in 1:25.64. The Futurity was the second stakes win of the day for Boyce, who earlier won the Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship on Look Who’s Talking.

Ravenheart is trained by Francis Abbott III, who said after the race that Miller had sent him seven horses. Ravenheart, in his prior start, had finished sixth in the Grade 2 Remsen, a 1 1/8-mile race at Aqueduct.

“We thought he deserved a shot in the Remsen,” Abbott said. “We had to sharpen him up for this and put some speed back in him to win today. He dug deep.”

Ravenheart is now 2 for 4 with earnings of $56,900.

Flash McCaul raced along the inside early. He worked his way outside horses on the stretch turn, reached the winner but could not get by. It’s the Journey finished third, 3 1/4 lengths farther back. Flash McCaul and It’s a Journey are both trained by Mike Trombetta.

Showalter, the 5-2 favorite, bobbled at the start but recovered to press the pace of Corvus. He then tired to finish last. Corvus finished sixth.